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Russia ratifies key European court reform

Russian lawmakers have voted to approve a long-delayed reform of the European Court of Human Rights, boosting an institution often critical of Moscow.

Friday’s ratification is a positive sign for Switzerland, which has presided over the Council of Europe since November.

The lower house of Russia's parliament, the Duma, ratified the protocol with 392 votes in favour and 56 opposed, reversing its previous rejection of the protocol in 2006.

Russia was the last member of the 47-nation Council of Europe not to have ratified Protocol 14 of the European Convention on Human Rights, aimed at streamlining the court's work and reducing its backlog of cases.

The Swiss will host a meeting aimed at addressing the court’s reforms from February 18-19 in the resort town of Interlaken.

The Council of Europe, the pan-European human rights watchdog under which the court operates, immediately welcomed the vote and called it a sign of Moscow's commitment to Europe and internal legal reform. and agencies

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